What are shortcodes and how to add them in WordPress?

What are shortcodes and how to add them in WordPress?

Shortcodes are part of the non-techies life in WordPress. If you want to know how to add and learn what are shortcodes on WordPress, now is your time.

The WordPress shortcodes let you add contents weather dynamic or static to your website. Each shortcode is a function made to be displayed on your website.

Shortcodes exist in both the ordinary WP Installation, or can be found in each plugin as an option to embed your shortcode to your website.

Overview

WordPress websites are based on shortcodes. If you use a WordPress theme such as Genesis, it is a framework, which works best with shortcodes and all you need to do is include them.

The best thing about a shortcode in WordPress is that they don’t add extra requests or slow down your actual loading time.

If your website is well optimized for speed, you will not have any issue with adding shortcodes, nor the need to download extra plugins.

Most of the WordPress users are downloading a bunch of plugins, which they don’t use at their maximum and leave a lot of requests working on the background, even though they are not displayed on the page or post that you had written.

Keeping your plugin list short is a good way to build you website in a healthy way, which will get you higher rankings, once Google starts noticing about you.

What are shortcodes in WordPress?

Shortcodes are functions created with PHP and/or other programming languages, which hold a small keyword. This keyword can also be called a name.

The usage of this name is to be called inside a WordPress website, which automatically starts the function created exactly for it.

The usage of shortcodes is simple. The only thing you need to do is to add your shortcode on the place you like and save the changes on your WordPress website.

How to add shortcodes in WordPress?

There are 3 different ways, that you can be adding a short code on WordPress

You can add it through your theme, through a plugin or use the blocks integrated in WordPress.

Add a shortcode through WordPress blocks

Adding shortcodes through the blocks editor on WordPress is one of the most basic tasks that we often do.

It is the most basic way, which does not require any code knowledge, plugins or extra work to do.

The basic thing about the blocks is that they are drag and drop, just like the page builder you may be using for construction your website.

Another way to create a space for your block is to click on the empty spaces, in which is written “Type / to choose a block”.

Once you click on one of these empty spaces a block menu will appear in front of your eyes. You can scroll this menu, or simply type “shortcodes”, which will take out the shortcodes block on the place you had chosen the block to appear.

When the shortcode block appears, it will be completely empty, so you can add the shortcode you want. It doesn’t matter if it’s from a plugin, or you had created your own shortcode. Everything will work the way it is supposed to.

Add a shortcode through the WordPress theme

If you would like to add shortcodes on your template in WordPress, you will need to access the theme directly. It could be through FTP, or you can simply go to your theme editor, where you will see all of the files that your theme is holding.

Now once, you had accessed your WordPress theme, you will have to pick the best place for you and add the shortcode to it.

To add a shortcode to your WordPress theme, you basically need to add this line of code:

<?php echo do_shortcode("[your_shortcode]"); ?>

The part which says “your_shortcode” has to be changed with the actual name of the shortcode you want to put, otherwise it will not work or display properly.

In fact, you will be seeing the whole code or an error, which should give you the idea, that something was not set properly.

It will start displaying on the spot you had given it, but may not look the way that you were thinking.

The best way to style your shortcodes is to add them to a div class=”my-class” tag, so you can wrap your shortcode and add any kind of style that would suit your design.

Add a shortcode on your WordPress sidebar

The sidebar is a perfect place to add a shortcode, which will be displayed to your visitors. Many people use the author shortcode or any kind of shortcode that may show a promotion or subscription to the newsletter.

For example, on my website I am using the Mail Poet shortcode, which is displayed on every page of my website, by simply adding the name of the shortcode.

Since Mail Poet had its shortcode already registered, it would make the work much easier for me. If you aren’t a techie and don’t want to mess something up, you can always check if your widgets have registered shortcodes.

All you need to do is drag the widget that you would like, to your sidebar and it will start displaying as soon as you update your widgets page.

Another way of adding a widget through code is by selecting the shortcode widget.

Once you had selected the shortcode widget, all you need to do is fill out the name of the widget, which you can find around the plugin or its description.

The widget will once again start displaying once you hit the button update, but if the widget throws the name of the widget, such as “mailpoet_shortcode_1”.

If you are having problems finding the shortcodes, you can always ask in the support pages of the plugin creators.

Many other people refer to StackOverflow, which is another great place to find an answer to all of your questions.

Conclusion

Now that you know about the creation of shortcodes and their function, you should have no problems starting out your website’s new design.

They can be really helpful in terms of adding some Call to Action spots, which can bring you more page views, income and the most important part… happy visitors.

The idea of using shortcodes is to have an easier experience, without coding, but only dragging and dropping different elements to your sidebars, menus and around your pages.

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